Modeling trichloroethylene degradation by a recombinant pseudomonad expressing toluene ortho-monooxygenase in a fixed-film bioreactor

Adam K. Sun, Juan Hong, Thomas K. Wood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations

Abstract

Burkholderia cepacia PR123(TOM23C), expressing constitutively the TCE-degrading enzyme toluene ortho-monooxygenase (Tom), was immobilized on SIRAN(TM) glass beads in a biofilter for the degradation and mineralization of gas-phase trichloroethylene (TCE). To interpret the experimental results, a mathematical model has been developed which includes axial dispersion, convection, film mass-transfer, and biodegradation coupled with deactivation of the TCE-degrading enzyme. Parameters used for numerical simulation were determined from either independent experiments or values reported in the literature. The model was compared with the experimental data, and there was good agreement between the predicted and measured TCE breakthrough curves. The simulations indicated that TCE degradation in the biofilter was not limited by mass transfer of TCE or oxygen from the gas phase to the liquid/biofilm phase (biodegradation limits), and predicts that improving the specific TCE degradation rates of bacteria will not significantly enhance long-term biofilter performance. The most important factors for prolonging the performance of biofilter are increasing the amount of active biomass and the transformation capacity (enhancing resistance to TCE metabolism).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)40-51
Number of pages12
JournalBiotechnology and bioengineering
Volume59
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 5 1998

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

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